After our unseasonably mild weekend, my thoughts have turned to spring and some of the issues that are particular to this time of year. The following information is a refresher of procedures and facts germaine to such activities.
- Spring starts folks thinking of improvements to their homes and many projects require a building permit from the village. The terms of a village permit allow work to be done from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays only. If the project is one for which a permit is not required, for examplek painting, work can be done on weekends. However, even work acceptable to do on weekends must respect the village’s noise ordinance and not create an undue disturbance. Villagers can call the Police Department with any noise concerns. If you anticipate any work on your home, start by calling the Building Department at 914-337-7338. The staff can guide you as to whether permits or variances are required. Undertaking work without permits results in the doubling of fees, both on the cost of the permit itself and the estimate of the value of the project. Many residents are running into this problem when they go to place their home on the market and find projects have no valid certificate of occupancy so the home cannot be transferred. Even seemingly small projects, such as electrical or plumbing work, need permits. The overriding concern is safety both for one’s own home and nearby neighbors. After a permit request is filed, work cannot commence until the permit request is reviewed and signed off by the Building Department. All fences (even replacements), sheds and emergency generators require a permit regardless of the height or size.
- If you need additional new recycling bins, they can be purchased by mailing in a check or cash or stopping by Village Hall with the $10 fee. We do not keep a large quantity of bins on hand at Village Hall so we deliver to your home after purchase.
- We still have many street lights out, some unfortunately since Hurricane Sandy. The outages are a result of significant damage to the electrical feed and we are diligently pressing Con Edison to address the situation.
- Spring also brings greater turnover of residents in village houses and apartments. Residents of some of our townhomes and apartment complexes often rent parking spaces on a first come, first serve basis. However, when one sells or purchases a unit, the parking space is not part of the deed of transfer. This confusion has led to many frustrated new purchasers. However, there is a solution. If you plan on purchasing in the village, one can put their name on the waiting list in anticipation of purchase. Conversely, if you plan on selling in the not too distant future, you may put your name on the waiting list as well to save a spot for your anticipated purchaser.
- As an interesting factoid, there are 1,678 parcels of property that make up the geographic boundaries of the village. Of that number, 1,595 are classified as taxable and are responsible for the tax levy — 18.07 percent which goes to operating the village and 81.93 percent to our school.
- The nice weather also contributes to an increase in door-to-door solicitations. Individuals selling goods cannot do so legally without first receiving a permit from the village. Do not hesitate to call the Police Department if the salesperson cannot produce their permit. Upon investigation, the police have found that some of the charities that were purported to benefit from our purchases were non-existent. The First Amendment does protect all those “selling” an idea or cause, so groups such as the Jehovah Witnesses or Greenpeace do not need permission to ring your bell. To limit this kind of visit, a small “No Solicitation” sign near the front door has proven effective.
- Residents and visitors to the village who may want to enjoy a spring meal or matinee now have many options for extended time parking: an entire row in the Garden Avenue lot is a mixture of two and three hour meters, the Cedar Street lot and Cedar Street itself has two-hour parking as does Kraft Avenue on the train station side, Kensington Road near the Blue Moon Restaurant and Paxton Avenue and Parkway Road on the west side. For even longer stays, the first 34 meters inside the Kraft lot, closest to the People’s Bank, accommodates three-hour parking and at the far end of the Kraft lot, near St. Joseph’s Church, there are many underutilized unrestricted parking spaces that allow for 12-hour stays. Just a short walk allows you to enjoy long visits in the village without the concern of expiring meters.